How To Make Money At Home – 7 Different Methods
There's no doubt there are all kinds of ways to make money at home, especially online. But which one do you choose and which one's really work?
Today I'm diving into 7 ways you can make money at home. Now I'm not going to go into the actual steps of each method, each method could be it's own article.
But what I am going to do is cover the broad strokes of each method and also rate the difficulty, or ease and risks of each the method.
Ok, let's get to it.
1) Affiliate Marketing
If you're like many people you've probably heard of affiliate marketing. And with good reason, it is by far one of the most popular methods of making money at home.
It's one of the simplest and most proven business models used online and the threshold for getting started as an affiliate is very low which makes it one of the easier ways to create a sustainable and scalable income.
Now if you're not familiar with affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is a method where you promote other companies products or services and if a person clicks a special affiliate link that's provided to you by the company, and that person makes a purchase you make a commission from that sale.
And there are 10's of 1000's of companies that have affiliate programs. So finding a product or service that you're interested in promoting and making money with is not a problem.
The other up side to affilaite marketing is it costs absolutely nothing to sign up (apply) to become an affiliate for a company.
Now affiliate marketing can be done in all kinds of ways. It can be done through social media, content marketing (blogging), video, paid advertising, email marketing and so on.
And just like any other method there is a learning curve which will require a variety of skills, all of which can be learned. So you're going to need to get a handle on things like traffic generation, SEO (search engine optimization), understanding analytics, content creation and so on.
All of this and more are all part of creating a successful affiliate marketing buisness.
The one down side to affiliate marketing is that you are at the mercy of others. Meaning if the affiliate program you are working with decides to change the percentage structure you can see a drop in earnings.
And worst case scenario the affilaite owner could shut down the affiliate program all together. So this is why you need to do your sure diligence when associating yourself with an affiliate program.
Sure affiliate marketing has some risk, but it's one of the best ways to make money at home for both beginners and experienced online marketers. And I speak from experience. I've been making a full time income as an affiliate marketer since 2005.
That's why it's my top recommendation for anyone just starting online and want's to build a solid online buisness.
If you're interested in affiliate marketing and would also like me to be your personal mentor click here and watch my free video mini course.
So here's the pro's of affiliate marketing:
- Costs nothing to become an affiliate
- You can build a steady income
- Promote products or services that you like
And here's the con's of affiliate marketing:
- There is a learning curve
- You're at the mercy of the affiliate owner
So I would rate affiliate marketing 4.5 out 5 because of the low risk of getting started.
2) Creating Your Own Physical Product
What I like about having your own product is you're in total control of the product, marketing and profits. It's all yours!
But with that independence comes a little more risk. The biggest one being a financial risk. You see when it comes to a physical product there are more costs involved.
Before you can start selling anything you have to first invest the money, time and energy it will take to create and produce your product. And remember, while this is happening you're spending money, you're not making any money.
And depending on what type of product you create you may need to invest in some inventory and if so you'll need a space for that. Which is an additional cost.
And since most physical products will have a lower profit margin until the business starts to scale up - keeping those cost as low as possible is a must if you want your business to succeed.
Now despite the overhead and bigger financial risk involved with a physical product the internet does give you the ability of not having a brick and mortar building and you can sell your product via a website. This alone makes things a lot easier and a little less risky.
So here's the pro's of creating your own product:
- It works, make a product - sell it.
And here's the con's of creating your own product:
- High financial risk
- Lower profit margins
- Complex business model - more moving parts
So I would rate creating your own product 2.5 out of 5 just because of the higher financial risk required to get things going.
3) Creating A Digital Product
The great thing about a digital product is the financial risks are very low compared to creating a physical product and the profit margins on digital products are a lot higher and digital products are usually easier to create.
Most digital products come in the form of software, ebooks, photographs even videos. The wonderful thing about a digital product is once you've created it you can reproduce it over and over again for no additional cost. Thus the huge profit margin.
With a digital product all you need is a website to sell your product and a solid marketing strategy. You can also sell your digital product through 3rd party sites such as Amazon.
Also with digital products you can automate the whole selling and delivery process. Almost a set and forget system, I said almost. You do have to watch over your sales and delivery process always making sure it's running smoothly.
You can even create your own affiliate program and list your program in affiliate networks such as Commission Junction or Share-A-Sale and have affiliates sell your product. Sure 3rd party vendors do take a piece of the pie but not enough that it hurts your bottom line
So here's the pro's of creating your own digital product:
- Easier to create and reproduce
- Higher profit margins
- Can set the whole selling and deleivery system on auto pilot
And here's the con's of creating your own digital product:
- Your idea can be copied - even stolen
So I would rate creating your own digital product 4 out of 5 because of the higher profit margin and the ability to automate the whole process.
4) Drop Shipping Physical Products
The great thing about drop shipping is you don't have to create a product nor keep any inventory or ship the product. You're the middle man (woman).
Even though the profit margins are usually lower using the drop shipping buisness model. It's a business model that is easy to scale up.
In this type of retail fulfilment method when someone purchases a product from your eCommerce store. You the merchant, then purchases the product through your 3rd party drop ship supplier and then they ship the product to your customer with your company label.
The customer will have no idea that the product they purchased from you came from a 3rd party.
Other then your eCommerce site and advertising and because you don't need to purchase product until you've made a sale and you're not dealing with inventory the drop shipping model has a very low start up cost and ongoing expenses.
So here's the pro's of drop shipping:
- Easy to get started
- Low overhead
- Easy to scale
- Don't have to purchase or inventory any stock
And here's the con's of drop shipping:
- Low profit margin
- Inventory issues - your supplier may be out of stock
- Supplier errors
- You have to deal with all customer issues even if your supplier screwed up
So I would rate drop shipping 4 out of 5 because of the ease of getting started.
5) Selling Software As A Service
Now this is not for the faint of heart. This is a big step because it's not easy nor is it cheap to set up.
You have to first create the software or have it created for you, either way this costs money. And there is the ongoing expense of maintaining the software for all your clients.
Also this type of business model needs a support system - so you will need to set up a support system for your clients.
Unlike a piece of software you make a one off purchase to use. This business model is set up as a subscription service. Take Aweber for example. This is a online auto-responder service (software) for email marketing.
And to use this online service you need to pay a subscription fee. And depending on the level of service you need determines the monthly or yearly subscription fee you'll pay.
The huge upside to services like this is they create a monthly recurring revenue. One that can grow every month with new subscribers.
As I said setting up this business model is much more complex, costs more and has more moving parts. But is it also has great potential.
So here's the pro's of selling software as a service:
- Recurring income
- Very scalable
And here's the con's of selling software as a service:
- High financial risk
- Ongoing expenses and maintenance
So I would rate selling software as a service 3 out of 5 because of the complexity of getting started.
6) Sell Your Skills
I bet you have a skill. And because of that you can sell your skill. Maybe you're a kickass website designer, or you have video creation skills or your a mad content writer or an artist who does logo design.
No matter what skill you have, you can make money from it.
Take me for example I'm a path of least resistance kind of guy. When I need something done I'll usually source out someone who has dedicated themselves to a certain skill.
Sure it may cost me money, but it would cost me more in time to learn how to do what I want done. And even if I do get things done it's probably not as good as it could be if I paid someone to do it.
We are becoming more and more service based, and thanks to the internet you never have to leave your house to start and build your business.
In fact getting your skills to market has become easier with places like Fivver, Upwork and Freelancer.
So here's the pro's of selling your skills:
- Easy to get started
- Plenty of 3rd party market places to sell your skills
- Work when you want
- Set your own pricing
And here's the con's of selling your skills:
- Can be very competitive
- Building up your client base takes time
- Hard to scale up the business
So I would rate selling your skills 4 out of 5 because of the ease of getting started.
7) Be A teacher And Create An Online Course
So here's the flip side to your skills. Instead of selling them you can teach them. People want to learn how to do what you know how to do, and they will happily pay to learn.
And with the applications you have at your finger tips you can teach anything to anyone, anywhere in the world.
There are several ways of creating your course. You can create an Ebook, or you could create a video series or you can do a combination of both.
And with programs such as Optimize Press creating and selling your course has become so much easier.
The wonderful thing about courses is the ability to set up a few different pricing models. This can be a one off price, or you can even create a membership site with a monthly fee. You can also create even more revenue by offering addition material.
You can even expand your marketing reach using a 3rd party market places like Lynda.com, Teachable.com and Udemy.com just to name a few.
You can even go a step futher to increase your sales and have your own affiliate program. Programs such as idevaffiliate software makes setting up and managing your own affiliate program very easy.
Scaling this type of business model is unlimited . You could even offer private training for a premium price. And again this could be a one off price or a monthly fee for ongoing private training.
Now the downside to using this business model is the upfront work of creating your course. Plus with any great online course you're students will expect you to provide ongoing support. So you will need to set up a support channel of some kind.
This could be as simple as email support to having a fully functional support members area.
So here's the pro's of creating an online course:
- Easily scalable
- Your product is unique
- Share what you know and make money
And here's the con's of creating an online course:
- Lot's of upfront work to create the course
- Needed ongoing support
So I would rate creating an online course 4 out of 5 because of the opportunities of scaling up the business.
Here's The Thing
No matter which way you choose to make money at home. Be it these 7 options or the many other options available. There's 2 very important things you must understand.
1) Building an online buisness to make money from home takes hard work and determination. It's not going to happen over night. But if you focus and know that you're going to have to put in some serious effort to make things work, you'll be just fine.
2) Not all making money opportunities are created equal. That's a kind way of saying there are a lot of garbage scam make money from home opportunities. So please don't just dive into something without first taking the time to do your due diligence.
Believe me, spending a a day doing your homework will save you a ton of aggravation and more often than not a lot of money.
I hope you found this post helpful, if so please share it with your audience. And if you have an comments or questions you can enter them below. And you can always email me any time.
I believe in you